Canada

Season Four of Arrested Development

Just learned that Season Four of Arrested Development will be made available to Canadians via Netflix !

Ten episodes are scheduled to be released in early 2013 on the service. I will update this entry with additional information a.s.a.p.

BTW, Seasons 1 through 3 are currently available on iTunes
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New Listing Added

I’ve just added a rough listing for musical instruments, accessories and recording equipment to this blog and will be updating it as soon as possible.

It includes sources within and outside Canada.

Zik.ca To Offer Streaming Music

Francophone music service Zik.ca will offer a streaming music subscription service on April 4th.

The Archambault.ca subsidiary will offer over 12 million songs to its subscribers, including a large repertoire of french music. No details as to the rates have been published yet.

Congratulations To Rush

Rush will be awarded the Governor’s General Performing Arts Awards for Lifetime Artistic Achievement this year, at a ceremony here in Ottawa on May 4th.

The trio will receive a commemorative medal struck by the Canadian Mint at Rideau Hall from his Excellency, the Right Honourable David Johnson, in celebration of their 40+ year career.

The MPAA & RIAA On Private Copying

The Motion Picture Association of America and Recording Industry Association of America have issued a join statement against the circumvention of copy protection for private copying.

On page 47 of their February 10th, 2012 statement the associations claim that there is no need for an exemption (in the States) because copies are available for purchase for numerous devices and “the inability to access a work on the device of one’s choosing is a mere inconvenience that does not justify an exemption“.

At the moment Canadians are not eligible to obtain “low cost” copies from most of the DVD/Blu-Ray programs mentioned in the American report.

We do have access to some digital copy titles. But these are generally included in the more expensive film packages (i.e “combo packs“) and many of these digital copy titles are time limited.

I believe digital copies with expiry dates are unfair to the consumer, who purchases the right to copy the material to a computer or portable device.

The ability to perform a digital copy is prominent on the packaging of these “combo packs” so it only logical to conclude that the consumer sees this ability as a feature and has chosen to purchase these “combo packs” for the ability, at extra cost.

That said, a nominal cost to perform a private copy would probably be the best option for the consumer.

Software is the best option for individuals who wish to make multiple private copies. But the entertainment industry should probably consider advertisement funded private copies to reduce the cost of a private copy after an initial purchase of a DVD or Blu-Ray disc by the consumer.

Whilst downloading a private copy a consumer could be shown numerous commercials for products or upcoming film and television features, like those found at the beginning of most DVDs and Blu-Ray discs.

Another option would be to offer Canadian consumers free downloads from existing services, thus promoting the sale of paid products on those services. There are numerous services available to Canadians including Bearshare and iMesh, who offer music videos, and iTunes and Netflix, who offer music and film downloads.

Some digital copies are available from these services and I suspect cloud services will become the consumer’s choice when it comes to private copying in the future, as it enables consumers to download or stream content on numerous devices.

Latvia Says No To ACTA / Bill C-11 Update

Latvia is the latest European nation to stop their ratification of the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement. And it appears that Germany wants to hold off on signing in response to the public protests in their country.

Unfortunately Bill C-11 has progressed through the first and second reading in the House Of Commons here in Canada, with little to no response to the overwhelming opposition to the digital locks provisions and SOPA like website blocking.

The public has spoken, both in the public consultations on Bill C-32 and with recent letters and petitions against Bill C-11.

It is clear that Canadians do not want contradictory policies on private copying and SOPA like enforcement of our Copyright Act. Over 32,000 Canadians have signed the Openmedia.ca petition, including yours truly. And 74,000 “liked” the petition on Facebook.

It is a matter of record. Members of Parliament have received letters and emails conveying concern about or opposition to several provisions in Bill C-11, yet the current government has failed to address this correspondence.

This bill was rushed through it’s second reading in the House of Commons today, with little time for debate, and is up for review by a committee, who will analyze and amend the bill.

Hopefully they will notice how contradictory the technological protections measures are and amend them accordingly.